Williams Family Award – $700 – Environmental Studies Students – Deadline 16th September 2016

The Williams Family Award ($700) for Environmental Studies Students is open for applications.

Deadline 16th September 2016

One or more awards of $700 are available for students that meets the following criteria:

  • Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident,
  • Completed the first year of full-time study in the Environmental Studies Diploma Program at Okanagan College

The recipient will be provided with a second installment of the award after successful completion of the Environmental Studies Diploma at Okanagan College based on continued eligibility with other criteria.

Selection of the award is based on a combination of academic achievement and financial need, with an emphasis on financial need.

The application form can be downloaded here:

Application for Williams Family Award _Fall2016

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Geography & Open Textbooks

As the school year begins, students always scramble to find the money for all those expensive textbooks that are required reading for their courses. What’s better than cheap textbooks with a guaranteed buyback? How about free, open textbooks that are available in multiple formats!

Okanagan College Geography, Earth, and Environmental Science professor Dr. Arthur ‘Gill’ Green has been working on just such a textbook with colleagues from across British Columbia. Full of case studies, lesson plan activities, and the latest facts on British Columbia, the open textbook is ready for adoption and adaption. It is the first geography open textbook of its kind!

Published in September 2014 by BCcampus OpenEd, the new textbook that he and the team of geography professors produced is available for download at the below links.

This textbook is best for regional geography courses focused on BC, but it also is remixable! So, any of the content can be adapted as long as it follows the Creative Commons license (CC-BY-4.0) . As cited in the introduction, “This first year Geography textbook takes a holistic approach to Geography by incorporating elements of physical, human and regional geography, as well as bringing in methods and perspectives from spatial information science.. This textbook applies a fundamental geographical approach to understanding our globally changing world by looking at local processes which are linked to larger global processes and events. For example mining and its effects are a global issue and we can see how these unfold in BC. A further example is the recent apology to First Nation peoples on the residential school treatment, as similar events occur in the US, Ireland and Australia. Processes of urbanization, a phenomenon which people all over the globe are experiencing, can be seen in Vancouver with our discussion of the city’s development. Geography students, indeed all first year students, need to be able to critically assess their own contexts and environments in order to properly engage with our continually globalizing world.”

Paleomagnetism and Student Research at Okanagan College

Groundbreaking research often results from an unpredictable combination of circumstances. For Okanagan College students Julia Thielmann and Arianna Lapham, answering a call for student assistance in a research project had the unexpected results of participating in a study of international significance and getting the opportunity to give a presentation at the Western Division of Canadian Association of Geographers conference at the University of Victoria last month.

“It was such a great experience and I learned so much,” said Thielmann, a second-year Okanagan College student. “I really enjoy research work now and I’m hoping to be able to do more presentations. Talking with the other conference participants and learning about their work was really interesting.”

Led by Dr. Terence Day, College Professor of Geography & Earth and Environmental Science, the idea for the research study began with the College’s purchase of magnetic lab equipment from Lakehead University in Ontario.

Using soil samples collected by Day from a nine-kilometre stretch of coastline in North Norfolk in the United Kingdom, the research team sought to establish a relationship between levels of coastal erosion and magnetic materials left by waves. Coincidentally, the research study samples were taken from an area heavily damaged in December 2013 by severe storms and storm surges that swept a number of beach-side homes into the sea.

“There are clear environmental implications,” said Day. “There is more magnetic material in areas where there is more erosion. We can identify rates of coastal erosion even in places where they are not routinely monitored.”

Day will be using the magnetic lab equipment in two summer research projects – one in collaboration with UBC Okanagan which will measure properties of rocks from the Himalayas, and another in conjunction with the Royal British Columbia Museum and the University of Lethbridge examining sediment samples from the Merritt area.

“We were the only undergraduate students giving a presentation and we were definitely nervous,” said first-year student Lapham. “But we did really well, and the audience was very supportive. We got lots of compliments.”

For Thielmann and Lapham, the excitement of the past year is taking them in different directions. Having completed two years of university transfer studies at the College, Thielmann is moving on to complete her undergraduate degree at UBC Okanagan.

Lapham is looking forward to her second year at Okanagan College and is planning to take more geography classes.

See the full story here: http://www.okanagan.bc.ca/Campus_and_Community/employees/publicaffairs/news.html?BlogEntryID=34965

Welcome to new professor in Salmon Arm

Andrew Perkins in the field and soon in Salmon Arm!

We are excited to welcome our newest full-time faculty member – Andrew Perkins! Andrew is a glacial geomorphologist specializing in reconstruction of paleoglacial landsystems, Quaternary geology, sedimentology, geochronology and geophysics.

As of June 2014, Andrew will be based in Salmon Arm teaching and developing a new Environmental Studies Diploma option in Geographic Information Science. This GIS option will provide skills for students wishing to work with GIS, remote sensing, and other geospatial technology in the environmental sector. The option is expected to be available for students in 2015.

Andrew, welcome to the beautiful Okanagan!

http://www.okanagan.bc.ca/Programs/Areas_of_Study/arts/Departments/geogees/People/Andrew_Perkins.html

 

Okanagan Geology

 

map_geology

Interested in the geology of the Okanagan?

Dr. Todd Redding has created a free, virtual geology tour of dozens of the South Okanagan’s fascinating geology sites including the Naramata Falls, Sumac Ridge, Tout Creek Canyon, Skaha Bluffs, and many more. The website includes an interactive map and a constantly expanding list of resources for the curious. Check out the full website here:  http://okanaganlandscape.weebly.com/

Or start exploring links on the Okanagan Geology map now: https://mapsengine.google.com/map/u/0/edit?mid=z_C3TzL4jqKo.k7nkmasylHKQ

Military Maps and Cartographies of Remembrance

Canadian troops advancing behind a British Mark II tank at the Battle of Vimy Ridge (Wikipedia)

Dr. Terence Day and colleagues have put together a timely, fascinating exhibit on wartime cartography featuring rare maps that were used on the ground (many of the maps are from Dr.Day’s personal collection). Their work was recently featured in The Daily Courier (Kelowna). Read more about the rare war maps on display here:

http://www.kelownadailycourier.ca/front-page-news/military-maps-lead-viewers-down-road-of-wartime-secrets-11913.html